Politics seems to have creeped in Eurovision 2016 after a song, which contradicted contest rules, won instead of being banned.
In the past, Eurovision was an event that served as a unifying point even by warring states where conflicts are settled onstage through the beat of drums and the sway of the tunes. May 14, according to the column from Neil Clark, was “the day the music died.”
What happened was, Jamala sang a highly incendiary song, “1944,” seen by many as a criticism against Russia at the Ericsson Globe Arena in Sweden. According to the Russian media, the song violated Eurovision 2016 contest rules by injecting politics into the message.
Jamala is a native Crimean Tatar and the song “1944” is about the time when Josef Stalin kicked out all the ethnic groups from Crimea, which was annexed by Russia from Ukraine two years ago.
A report from BBC quoted Simon Bennett, the International OGAE Eurovision fan club head, that whether Russia likes it or not, Jamala’s win was a protest vote by the former Soviet countries that wanted to send a message to Moscow.
Meanwhile, Clark said that Jamala’s win in the Eurovision 2016 lends credence to earlier rumours that the European Broadcasting Union is hell bent on preventing Russia from winning this year’s contest. Her win was made even more painful because Russia was coming in as a favourite by the bookmakers.
“It wasn’t just the voting system –with ‘national juries’ used to skew public opinion, it was also the running order, in which Jamala, the Ukrainian contestant, was given a prime Number 21 slot to sing ‘1944,’” he wrote.
Now, Russia is calling for a boycott of next year’s contest which will be held in Ukraine for what it believed was a home-cooked decision in the Eurovision 20016.
Franz Klintsevich, Federation Council Committee on Defense and Security executive, said much in an article published on The Telegraph as he vowed to skip the event altogether “if nothing changes in Ukraine by next year.”